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Poster: sakanaband Date: Sep 13, 2011 1:48pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: grateful dead CASSETTE tapes

By 2003 I had whittled down a collection of over a thousand live tapes (80% GD) to a precious 100 of the best sounding and best performance ones there were. I had amassed, by that time, a substantial CD collection and just went on faith that I would some day, some how find these recordings again and maybe even in an upgraded form. I had some reservations about those last 100 since they had been steady friends and companions through the years while other things had come and gone. Especially the ones with a particular 'sound' and such.

Anyway, by that summer I was ready to let them go. I went to wonderful Phish show at Starlake in my hometown of Pittsburgh and brought the tapes with me. I didn't know how I was gonna get rid of them, but I knew something would turn up. My wife and two best deadhead buddies were with me. First we started to set a few on car windshields as an anonymous surprise. Then some people were interested in what we were doing from the strange look of things. We decided in a moment to rather give them away as gifts with a super brief story that they were the last remaining 10% of a beloved collection and were the best of all of 'em.

Folks were delighted. I'd show them some choices and allow them to pick out a couple. If there was a pair (first and second sets) they had to take the pair. Of course! It still tickles me sometimes to wonder where those tapes might be today, who listened to them, under what circumstances and if they had brought even a smidgen as much joy to those folks as they did for me and my loved ones.

Then the archive came online. It has grown and I have LOVED finding even better copies of those beloved shows. I especially love the great audience collection and therefore had no problem at all with the powers to be when they stopped allowing soundboard downloads. I see it as a wonderful retribution and happenstance for all the swell folks that were busy recording when I was dancing. Besides, a great audience blows away a soundboard any day. Matrix tapes, though, are admittedly very cool.

This site has its strength from those outrageously wonderful audience tapes (see Joani Walker, Steve Silberman, Ken and Judy Leigh, Bob Morris, Steve Rolfe, Rob Eaton, etc.). There is another site that compliments this one very nicely and has a WIDE array of artists that is mind-blowing in depth and breadth. In all due to respect to this my favorite live music site please consider checking out: www.sugarmegs.org